Tag Archive | persecution

Gethsemane

And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.
Mark 8:31 NASB

Then Jesus *came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and *said to His disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and distressed. Then He *said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.”
Matthew 26:36‭-‬38 NASB

“Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.
John 12:27 NASB


🌹Jesus. Perfect example. When troubled and deeply grieved You went to Your Father. You did not go seeking Your own way or asking to be taken out of what was coming. You went to the Father to connect, be strengthened, not forsaken. You confirmed Your calling, the purpose of Your life on earth with the Father. Before facing rejection and suffering You went to the Father. Jesus, may I be found kneeling at Your feet seeking Your strength when faced with suffering and persecution for Your name sake. Thank You for being my perfect example of what to do when facing trials, hard times, persecution, etc. In Jesus name and for Your glory. Amen.

Continually Seeking Him, 

Sharon 

Silent

He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth.
Isaiah 53:7 NASB

Don’t you find it amazing how Jesus was verbally slandered, ridiculed, beaten, harrassed and yet . . . did not open His mouth? He is God!! And He said nothing.

Equally amazing is that all four gospels mention Jesus’ quietness.

But Jesus kept silent.
Matthew 26:63 NASB

And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He did not answer. Matthew 27:12 NASB

But He kept silent and did not answer.
Mark 14:61 NASB

But Jesus made no further answer; so Pilate was amazed.
Mark 15:5 NASB

And he questioned Him at some length; but He answered him nothing.
Luke 23:9 NASB

and he entered into the Praetorium again and *said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer.
John 19:9 NASB

With these four eyewitnesses to the silence of Jesus, there must be a lesson here. Could it be that Jesus was content in knowing He was doing the Father’s will and that at anytime He could stop the process? Could He be showing His believers how to trust that He with the Father are in control? Could it be that Jesus was secure to trust the Father’s plan so He didn’t have anything to prove?

Jesus never tried to prove He was God. He never tried to bargain His way out of the situation. He simply trusted.

🌹God, I humbly bow before Your throne, asking that when faced with persecution, as it says in Your word, *”Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted”, that I would desire to bring glory to You instead of trying to save myself. I trust You with every day of my life. Here I am, totally surrendered, simply trusting. In Jesus name, amen.

*2 Timothy 3:12 NASB

Continually Seeking Him, 

Sharon 

Persecution “Granted”

For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,
Philippians 1:29 NASB

Christianity. I’m saved! Jesus is my Savior!! I’m going to heaven!!!

We tend to stop there. We are content to believe that all we need is to profess Jesus as Savior and feel secure that we are heaven bound.

Christianity is so much more. One of those “more” is “we have been GRANTED” “to suffer for His sake”. For Christ’s sake.

Persecution, suffering, insults are a blessing. What?! A blessing? We are to rejoice and be glad giving glory to God? That is what the Bible says.

“Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.
Matthew 5:11 NASB
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Matthew 5:12 NASB

If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.
1 Peter 4:14 NASBB
but if anyone suffers as a Christian, he is not to be ashamed, but is to glorify God in this name.
1 Peter 4:16 NASB

🌹As an example, brethren, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.
James 5:10 NASB

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

No Fear, Only Hope

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.             John 14:27 NASB

Truly, truly, I say to you, that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; you will grieve, but your grief will be turned into joy.  Therefore you too have grief now; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.      John 16:20‭, ‬22 NASB

Even though this word was written at a time when Jesus was talking to His disciples about His leaving to return to the Father, it is still pertinent today. God’s word transcends time to speak to all generations.

We may be facing a time in our lives of personal weeping and lamenting. We also may  be facing a time in history when we will be weeping and lamenting the times we have had freedom from ridicule and persecution as a Christian.

But GOD!!! Hallelujah, but God. . .

He has given us peace that the world cannot comprehend. We have the promise that Jesus “will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.”

So as the world rejoices while we weep and lament over the depravity in the world, let us hold fast to the promises of God and be at peace.

🌹 No fear, no troubled heart. Only hope.

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Denial

Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for Me? Truly, truly, I say to you, a rooster will not crow until you deny Me three times.      John 13:38 NASB1995

Peter said to Him, “Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You.” All the disciples said the same thing too. Matthew 26:35 NASB

Haven’t we all been there? We are gung-ho in His presence or when amongst other brothers and sisters. But what happens when we are alone, confronted with the truth? Whether through the conviction of the Holy Spirit through the word of God or out in the world amongst aggressive unbelievers.

Christian brothers and sisters, we have been silent too long. We have been passive when confronted with our faith. It is time to stand for Truth. Jesus is the Truth.

Will you deny Him when confronted with your faith? Now is the time to ask yourself and to prepare for persecution of your belief.

🌹 Is God deeply abiding in you? Are you experiencing Him daily? Without the Holy Spirit abiding in you there will be no standing strong. Surrender now to His will. No more denying.

“Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven. Matthew 10:32‭-‬33 NASB

Continually Seeking Him,

Sharon

Ashamed?

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. — Romans 1:16

Is God trying to alert us? I received a devotional this morning from a blog I follow and this is the verse referenced. I open “biblegateway.com” this morning and what is the verse of the day? You’re right, Romans 1:16. If I’m not mistaken I think I saw it on Facebook yesterday.

There are a lot of changes going on in the United States, and worldwide, that is challenging those who believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, who died for the sin of all mankind, and was raised on the third day, as stated in the Holy Scriptures. That is the gospel in a nutshell.

Do you believe? Are you ashamed? I believe a time of great testing is coming. Are you ready?

“Be on guard, so that your hearts will not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life, and that day will not come on you suddenly like a trap; for it will come upon all those who dwell on the face of all the earth. But keep on the alert at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” — Luke 21:34-36

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon

Narrow Gate/ Wide Gate Addendum

Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. — Matthew 7:13-14

When the realization sinks in that billions are headed to eternal destruction, what is your response? As Jesus wept over Jerusalem, should we not have compassion as He did?

Is your faith serious enough to face opposition and/or persecution for the sake of billions? How about those in your family? Your friends? This is serious. Are we taking the Words of our God seriously? Do we care as He cares?

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon

How Do You Handle That?

When you “do good” — are obedient to God’s Word, will, direction, instruction and walking closely with Jesus — don’t you expect good results?

Going through a particular journey you know that God is present. He is guiding your every step. You see God at work and you feel extremely blessed. A lot of good is coming out of your obedience and God’s will is being accomplished. You are encouraged, blessed and praised by others around you. You are floating on cloud nine.

Then . . . the season of that journey comes to an end. You move on and it seems that all has been forgotten — all those “good things” that you did. The praise ends. It seems that no one cares. And to add to the feeling of abandonment comes persecution. Accusations of misconduct and inadequacy. “But I was in the midst of God’s will, doing what I believe the Bible instructs me to do. How can this happen?” How do you handle that?

Jesus was well respected by many people, especially those who benefited from His grace and power. He had quite a following. For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; (Hebrews 7:26) who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; (1 Peter 2:22) You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. (1 John 3:5) Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following Him, “I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith.” (Luke 7:9) Jesus was right in the midst of fulfilling the Father’s will and purpose. People were coming to Jesus and having their sin forgiven.

Then . . . accusations started to fly. And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He did not answer. Then Pilate *said to Him, “Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?” And He did not answer him with regard to even a single charge, so the governor was quite amazed. (Matthew 27:12-14) In humiliation His judgment was taken away”  (Acts 8:33) He was good, loving, caring and obedient to the Father. He did not seek the praise of man but the will and praise of the Father. How could this happen to Jesus?

The Word of God says:
“Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. — Matthew 5:10-11
Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. — John 15:20
Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. — 2 Timothy 3:12
If Jesus was persecuted we can expect to be persecuted also.

So, back to the question, “How do you handle that”? Remember! Remember to focus on Jesus and His example, how He reacted to persecution. Remember that He is with you always. (Deuteronomy 31:6) Remember where to stash your treasures. (Matthew 6:19-21) Remember His faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:23; Psalm 33:4; Psalm 100:5) Remember that all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28) And remember to Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:12)

Continually seeking Him,

Sharon